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Comparison of electric bicycles

April 26, 2010

Reading the UK version of Wired Magazine (Dec 09) I came across a comparison piece about electric bicycles. After being passed at reasonable speed on Linear Park by an electric Dragster I was interested to read how good they actually are.

The comparison was between a Cytronex Capo electric front wheel hub on a Canondale, A Wisper 906, an Urban Mover UM36X and a Infineum Extreme. The looked at time taken from 0 to 15mph (24.14kph) and top speed and the route was a 14 mile (22 km) commute through London. All the bike frames except for the CAPO on the Canondale are heavyish looking flatbar bikes with 26inch wheels, suspension forks and derailleurs. The Canondale was a drop bar singlespeed.

Maybe because of the bike itself the winner of the two categories and overall was the Cytronex Capo. Not only was it fast it also had commuter in mind touches like built in lights. The others did well in terms of only using half the battery life, being able to carry a spare, accurate indicators and intelligent power assistance.

The downsides were that riding the bikes without power assistance was pretty sluggish compared to normal bikes and I can imagine they are pretty heavy. There was no info about how to recharge the lithium-ion batteries (and cost).

The Urban Mover is available in Adelaide. It’s imported by Battery World at Payneham and the Lochiel Park ‘eco’ development in Campbelltown bought 9 of them for the community to use to reduce car use (short trips to the shops etc). The Wisper Bikes 906 is also available.

The prices ranged from 1,100 pounds to 1,650 for the Cytronex Capo Canondale. Read the review here as a PDF (from the Cytronex Capo site.)

Cytronex Capo on a Canondale Super Six.


Wisper Bikes 906

Infineum Extreme
Urban Movers (photographed by me on my mobile phone)

Download now or preview on posterous

WiredCapoReveiw.pdf (2378 KB)

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From → cycling, design, gadgets

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